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Week 15: New England Patriots (6-7) @ Miami Dolphins (8-5)


NE @ MIA  

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  • Poll closed on 12/20/2020 at 06:03 PM

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They won in Week 1, but we're both different teams now. The Patriots are nearly eliminated from postseason contention. Meanwhile, while we would make the playoffs if they ended today, due to a brutal Week 14, it's extremely likely we'll need to win out to make the playoffs. This is a game we absolutely cannot afford to lose. And the Pats would love to play spoilers to us in our own house.

Offensively, Tua continues to emerge and will face yet another stingy defense in New England's. And he may be without both of his favorite targets as DeVante Parker and Mike Gesicki both nurse injuries sustained against Kansas City. This will certainly be a test to see how scrappy the rookie can get. Thus, our WR and TE depth will continue to get tested coming in against one of the league's better secondaries. Thankfully our RBs should be off the COVID list and ready to go... Myles Gaskin in particular very well may be a critical part of the offense this week in both the running and passing game.

Defensively, assuming Cam Newton plays, they're going to be able to move the ball on the ground. He torched us in Week 1 and we've gotten no better at defending against scrambling QBs since then. We should be getting Van Noy back for this matchup, which will be a big boon since he's our best Linebacker overall.

Must win game for us to stay alive... playoffstatus.com has our chance of the playoffs dropping to just 6% if we lose. Especially considering our injuries, this game is absolutely not a gimme. In fact, I like our chances against Las Vegas next week better all things considered. I think ultimately, in Miami, we take it though.

New England 19

Miami 23

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Really looking forward to this. Last week I wanted to see how our defense could respond and deal with a high powered offense, this week I am  interested in how Tua can respond to the Patriots defensive schemes. I like our chances mainly because of our defense. 

Miami 17

Patriots 10

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1 hour ago, Phinsesq said:

Really looking forward to this. Last week I wanted to see how our defense could respond and deal with a high powered offense, this week I am  interested in how Tua can respond to the Patriots defensive schemes. I like our chances mainly because of our defense. 

Miami 17

Patriots 10

Our defense has gotten torched by the run this year though. And not only do the Patriots have Cam Newton who shredded us Week 1, they have a rising star in Damien Harris.

I don't doubt we'll have a very good chance to limit them to under 100 yards passing. But it won't matter if they have 200+ yards rushing.

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45 minutes ago, TheKillerNacho said:

Our defense has gotten torched by the run this year though. And not only do the Patriots have Cam Newton who shredded us Week 1, they have a rising star in Damien Harris.

I don't doubt we'll have a very good chance to limit them to under 100 yards passing. But it won't matter if they have 200+ yards rushing.

I'm interested to see how much they sell out against the run.  Obviously they will put a spy on Cam, but I'm wondering if they bring a safety up every down.  

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So, injury updates...

  • Devante Parker is expected to play. So at least Tua will have one decent receiver to throw the ball to.
  • Mike Gesicki, meanwhile, is a game time decision after being limited in practice Thursday and Friday. This is actually good news as many thought during the injury he sustained would keep him out the remainder of the year. While he'll probably be limited versus the Patriots if he plays, at least this points to him being available for our final two contests.
  • Jakeem Grant, while listed as questionable, is unlikely to play. While we won't have to deal with his drops for this contest, losing a dynamic playmaker will hurt us.
  • Ereck Flowers is also unlikely to play despite the questionable designation. Belichick will look to try to exploit our three-rookie line.
  • Kyle Van Noy and Elandon Roberts are both listed as game-time decisions, but it sounds like there's some optimism they'll be able to play against their former team. Roberts sucks but getting Van Noy back would be huge.
  • Bobby McCain practiced so there's optimism he will play.

Overall, better news than I was expecting for our receiving corp.

Also major news for the Patriots:

  • Patriots RB Damien Harris will be OUT with a back injury, so at least that's one less thing to worry about. Still, Sony Michel is a talented back in his own right and will look to exploit the Dolphins' poor run defense. To say nothing of Cam Newton.
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RB: Breida and Gaskins.

 

Has a rookie ever had a worst supporting cast ?? Probably but I don't think it's fair to judge Tua until he has at least has some better weapons to work with. It'll need to be the primary focus this offseason along with run stopping.

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We have absolutely nothing going from our skill guys. None of the RBs have anything going. Breida had one nice carry but that's it. WRs aren't getting open. Horrific drop from Hollins towards the end of the half. LBJ and Laird are the only guys with multiple grabs (LBJ has 3, Patrick Laird 2). Maybe we try to get the TEs more involved? I'm not sure what the answer is, but we desperately need someone to get open. 

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